The political chaos that has engulfed Democratic Republic of Congo might soon be an issue of the past.
This is after backers of President Joseph Kabila and part of the opposition agreed on Wednesday on the sequence of a series of upcoming elections, potentially removing a major obstacle and breaking the political impasse.
The two sides agreed the presidential vote would be combined with legislative and provincial elections, with local polls to be held later but did not set any specific dates.
This happenened even after a group of opposition boycotted the talks on disagreement over the timing of the next polls which was due to happen in November but which authorities say cannot be done.
The opposition had insisted the presidential election should be the next poll held but the government said local elections should take place first, likely further delaying the presidential vote.
Most major opposition parties are boycotting the talks, which they see as giving Kabila a chance to justify what they say is his plan to stay in power beyond the end of his mandate in December, breaking constitutional term limits.
Diplomats and observers fear the political crisis could trigger a repeat of civil war that killed millions of people between 1996 and 2003.